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Let me be the first to complain about the 2012 price hike!


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#1 Adv1sor

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 07:12 PM

I'm first!

Not really complaining though. Still worth every penny Posted Image

Edited by Adv1sor, 20 February 2012 - 07:13 PM.


#2 Dark-Ryo

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 08:43 PM

I'm complaining.
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#3 Momiji

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 08:53 PM

You know, this is really getting out of hand. I'm really curious what the reasons are for the constant rate hikes. If it's simply a price limiter for attendees, I can't really say it's worth going to Otakon anymore, and I don't even have to deal with lodging (I live in Baltimore).
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#4 Jeremytroid

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 09:08 PM

Renting space in the Hilton costs beyond our mortal comprehension, so I'm guessing that's what causes the increases. The street festival too, if they're having it.
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#5 Daniel Perales

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 10:06 PM

Wow!

It only went up 5 bux from last year, and already people are screaming foul.Posted Image
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#6 tstidm1

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 10:07 PM

Otakon spends a whole day (10 plus hours) discussing the budget. There are no discounts to have a vote in this organization. As a new voting staffer, I was amongst the first to pay the $70 for a membership. It has been since 2009 with the last increase in membership. For Example, Flights have gone up anywhere from $100 to $500 in the last few years. The cost of many convention things aren't getting any cheaper. We make awesome happen (700 staffers along with over 30,000 attendees) by our hard work and passion. The unique nature of Otakon is why I spent six years as a gofer to become a staffer.

#7 ShadowVash04

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 10:28 PM

Blame it on the horrible exchange rate of dollar to yen, as well as general fees gone up in running Otakon. I believe the last time we increased rates was in 2008, so by all accounts, we've been good for awhile. Trust me, I'm not always in favor of a rate hike, but we only do it when it is justified and needed in order to cover our expenses. We still plan on bringing you 3 1/2 days worth of awesome entertainment, programming, concerts, and fun, we just needed a little more this year in order to cover it. Plus, think about it this way: better to do it this year and have more money to rely on for 2013, Otakon's 20th anniversary, where we plan to bring you some really kick ass stuff, than have to hike the price again next year.

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#8 MBlilithschild

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 11:11 PM

As long as it doesn't eventually (but I feel it will) go over $100 I'll be okay with it. But when and if that happens, I'll be out of college by then so it might not be a problem ^^
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#9 Joe Foering

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 11:16 PM

"Constant" rate hikes? I'm sorry, but the last one was three years ago. And it is disingenuous to even suppose that it was done as a "price limiter" for attendees" -- what does that even mean? Do you think we want to exclude certain people from coming?

The membership rates *occasionally* have to be raised because our costs go up on a *constant* basis. When our costs go up we can either put forth a modest rate increase to cover the higher costs, or we can cut back on what we provide (fewer live events, fewer musical acts, fewer guests, fewer panels, etc.). Which would you rather we do?

I had a lot more to say on this subject in another thread, so I'm simply going to link to it rather than cross-post in multiple threads.

http://board.otakon....ndpost&p=249690
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#10 itachiromeep

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 11:53 PM

I went to a restaurant yesterday that had $14-16 appetizers. This doesn't surprise me.

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#11 Tai Prime

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:08 AM

It's only 5 dollars. Just suck it up people. If you all want An anime convention Worth going to and The best Enertainment out there stop complaining. The cost of bands, singers, rent, and other things that makes Otakon one of the best Anime conventions around are rising. It's worth 5 extra dollars.

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#12 toujourspret

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:16 AM

As Joe so eloquently and concisely put it in his response in the other thread (seriously, go read it; it answers most if not all of your issues very well), Otakon costs more to attend because it costs more to put on. Every year the people in charge of planning this show go absolutely crazy trying to cram as much awesome into every second of time available. For what it's worth, at $70, you're still paying roughly a buck and a half (technically $1.63) for each hour of programming, no matter what you choose to do. I don't think that's too bad--I'd be glad to pay at least a couple of times that for some of the things we put on, especially the concerts and premieres.

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#13 ojiru

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:35 AM

For $70 I expect at the very least a well known musical guest, and the last time a good group was over here was in 2006. I don't very much consider Yoshiki advertising for his band on the west coast as that either. Honestly over the last couple of years I find myself wondering why I'm dishing out so much money for Otakon when there's less and less things exciting about it.

#14 behindirisheyes

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:56 AM

i kinda have to agree with ojiru. Last year there were maybe 3 guests worth seeing and if you wanted to see the nobuo oematsu concert i believe you had to pay extra for it. No one cared about the band that was there last year, i thought seeing home made kazuko was pretty cool 2 years ago, but other then that ive been going every year since 07 and havent cared about a band yet. the fashion designers is such a niche market most people dont care.

One of my biggest problems is there was a price hike announced but there hasnt been anything else announce, no band, no guests, no panels, no nothing so to me it looks like were paying extra money for literally nothing.

and you said otakon is doing this for over 30,000 people its only broke the 30,000 person mark once that was last year, PAX gets 50,000 and only charges $65 and they are starting to pay their volunteers
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#15 ojiru

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:57 AM

Honestly, AX starts at $45 and is a 4 day con in LA, a city vastly more expensive than Baltimore. And Otakon has consistently one of, if not the highest economic impacts on Baltimore every year. I can't wrap my brain around these things.

#16 LordBaltar

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:03 AM

PAX is not an Anime convention - you are comparing apples and oranges...


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Edited by LordBaltar, 21 February 2012 - 01:04 AM.


#17 behindirisheyes

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:16 AM

yeah but its a convention in the same vain as otakon im willing to bet that most people that go to otakon also go to PAX and vice versa i also forgot to specify which pax i ment to say PAX east
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#18 toujourspret

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:23 AM

For $70 I expect at the very least a well known musical guest, and the last time a good group was over here was in 2006. I don't very much consider Yoshiki advertising for his band on the west coast as that either. Honestly over the last couple of years I find myself wondering why I'm dishing out so much money for Otakon when there's less and less things exciting about it.


I think this is a different tastes issue--for me, 2010 was a stellar year for programming. I saw and enjoyed all of the concerts, went to more industry panels than I have in any other year, and enjoyed every minute of several fan panels. Not every year is going to appeal to every attendee, of course, but just because you aren't the biggest fan doesn't mean it wasn't a good year for guests--it just means you weren't interested that year.

And honestly, I think Yoshiki choosing to take the time to come promote his band at Otakon was really, really cool. I mean, he could have spent that week in a posh hotel somewhere, having rehearsals and all kinds of rock-star-type luxuries, but he chose to come spend time with us because he thinks we're cool. That says something awesome about Otakon and the kind of reputation our Industry/Guest Relations folks are trying to cultivate that people who could be doing something else would rather spend time here, making our members happy.

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#19 ojiru

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:38 AM

He advertises at otakon but actually performs at AX? I'm sorry but that's insulting. Nevermind that reviving X without core members is already lame, but I won't get into that. The only reason Yoshiki comes to Otakon is because no one is going to deny him, and because it's the second largest anime convention in the US which means a large target audience for him to advertise for. It's business. His visit in 06 was cool, in 2010 it was insulting.

And I understand the vast attendance of this con is going to have different tastes, but last five years the musical guests have all had a slant into one particular genre. People have been begging for Pillows since FLCL came out, and I doubt we'll ever see them (and they certainly would make a $70 worth it). And the musical guests don't even get announced til practically a week before the con, that's rotten imo.

Edited by ojiru, 21 February 2012 - 01:41 AM.


#20 Saber-chan

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 07:22 AM

People are going to complain at a price rise, con or not. In the end, people who feel the cost is still worth it to them will happily pay the price. At about $23 a day (not including anything Thursday), the cost isn't bad. Besides, for some people, the cost of the badge isn't just worth it for the programming. It's worth it for that and the other things they do while there- seeing friends they don't otherwise get to see, meetups, the chance to peruse a large DR and AA setup, etc.
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#21 kalyoth

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 08:00 AM

Just to add my two cents in here - Anime Boston was $45-$50 prereg and $55 at door. They have had prereg going since last year, have been announcing guests and programming, are hitting roughly 18-19,000 now (trending higher historically at the 10 yerar point), have had a ton of awesome programming guests and events, and are going head to head with PAX East in the same city, same weekend this year. Might be worth checking out should you have the time in April.

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Edited by kalyoth, 21 February 2012 - 08:05 AM.


#22 cupcake14

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 08:08 AM

I just wish that they would give some sort of discount for those that keep coming back every year. For example, maybe $5 off if you've come 5+ years or $10 off for 10+ years. It's not that much but that $5-10 makes a difference, at least to me.

#23 razisgosu

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 08:57 AM

Seriously for all you whiners complaining about the $5 rise, get over it or do not go, that's all there is to it. Prices rise, its part of how the world works. If otakon has to increase their membership fees to keep providing the convention then so be it.

If you can't afford $5 when they've informed us 5 months in advance, then you have major problems and going to otakon shouldn't be one of them.

#24 MattTheMinion

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 09:15 AM

We basically go through the same discussions every time the membership fee has been raised, both on the sides of the staff when we discuss whether or not we have to and with the membership who react to it. However, I am curious to hear about the following from people who are complaining about the price increase:

What do you feel is a "fair" price for a membership?
What would you be willing to give up at Otakon to achieve that price vs. the current one?

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#25 Ikano

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 10:09 AM

I just wish that they would give some sort of discount for those that keep coming back every year. For example, maybe $5 off if you've come 5+ years or $10 off for 10+ years. It's not that much but that $5-10 makes a difference, at least to me.

Gofering in a sense is something like that

I mean....it's not exactly how you describe it (the whole "going several years in a row consecutivly = more discount" thing)....but I'm just suggesting that if someone has gone to Otakon so many times finds that this price hike is a little more than painful then try looking at Gofering/volunteering as an option? Because they do re-imburse you if you commit to a certain amount of work hours...

I have to admit that was part of the reason why I decided to look into gofering some 5-some years ago...

Edited by Nadistu, 21 February 2012 - 10:10 AM.

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#26 DeathJester

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 10:59 AM

What do you feel is a "fair" price for a membership?
What would you be willing to give up at Otakon to achieve that price vs. the current one?


All prices are based on 3 day passes with current pre-reg discounts if available
San Diego Comic con: $150 (4 day)
Wizard World Chicago: $70 (4 day)
Gen Con Indy: $70 (4 day)
Otakon: $70
NYCC / NYAF Combo: $65 ($85 for 4 day)
PAX East: $65
Anime Expo: $60 (4 day)
Sakura-Con: $55
Anime Central: $53
Anime Boston: $50

Now that we have the facts out of the way, here is my opinion:
Otakon's price point at $70 prereg is not outrageous but you are sitting a full $10-15 dollars over the anime con alternatives. The other issue is that in 2010 when the price jumped from $55 to $65, we were told that the $10 jump instead of the usual $5 increase was so that Otakorp can cover the rising costs of rent and labor over the next few years (I'll check the old forums for a direct comment on this matter later). Only waiting two years for another price increase is too soon. I can only hope that the Thursday Matsuri makes a return this year and has enough unique programming to make Otakon an unofficial 4 day convention to justify the price.

#27 SilverMiko

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:28 PM

There have been many excellent points already said by other staff here, so I will not be redundant and repeat them.
What you guys have to understand is- we do NOT like to raise the prices unless we honestly have to. The discussions on this topic on the staff end aren't quick, trust me, and a lot of debate goes into it, but ultimately, this year, it was necessary in order to put on our event.
What you guys need to realize is, the cost of running the event does increase a little each year. We try to prepare but even we can't predict cost a few years down the road. The facility space, union labor, AV set up, the logistics of running the show, contractors...these are the unseen things that are the structure of any show, but aren't as publicly noticeable as guests. And they cost money to make sure there's a show there when we walk in to set up for you guys.
And yes, the yen did come into play, and sadly we at Otakon can't change exchange rates. I wish!
Other conventions run logistically different than each other. Facilities cost, sponsored or not sponsored, labor, logistics, etc are ALL different for each show and this reflects the price point for each show. There are honestly several other factors that come into play, but I only staff Otakon and AB so I can't and won't speak for other conventions. It's like comparing apples to cucumbers, basically, is my point.

Also, just to clarify, Nobuo wasn't actually there as an Otakon guest, he happened to be in town at the same time and we worked something out with him for the Japan relief charity effort, but the concert itself with the Baltimore Symphony was a separate, non-Otakon event.

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#28 razisgosu

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:58 PM


What do you feel is a "fair" price for a membership?
What would you be willing to give up at Otakon to achieve that price vs. the current one?


All prices are based on 3 day passes with current pre-reg discounts if available
San Diego Comic con: $150 (4 day)
Wizard World Chicago: $70 (4 day)
Gen Con Indy: $70 (4 day)
Otakon: $70
NYCC / NYAF Combo: $65 ($85 for 4 day)
PAX East: $65
Anime Expo: $60 (4 day)
Sakura-Con: $55
Anime Central: $53
Anime Boston: $50

Now that we have the facts out of the way, here is my opinion:
Otakon's price point at $70 prereg is not outrageous but you are sitting a full $10-15 dollars over the anime con alternatives. The other issue is that in 2010 when the price jumped from $55 to $65, we were told that the $10 jump instead of the usual $5 increase was so that Otakorp can cover the rising costs of rent and labor over the next few years (I'll check the old forums for a direct comment on this matter later). Only waiting two years for another price increase is too soon. I can only hope that the Thursday Matsuri makes a return this year and has enough unique programming to make Otakon an unofficial 4 day convention to justify the price.


While this is a very good start to understanding the pricing facts among the various conventions, you also need to take into account the attendance count, the location, the varying economy per area and so on. It's not so easy as simply slapping a price on the table and saying make Otakon match this amount. Otakon is undeniably $10-15 above the average for 3 day conventions as has been pointed out in the quoted post.

Now we need to understand why. Quite frankly I'm shocked that AX is only $60 for a 4 day convention, however the attendance is also over 100,000 from my understanding and that is most likely the reason they can drop the price. Let's say Otakon received 50,000 atendees this year (in a world where the BCC can fit 50,000 people) would the cost next year drop since the income from attendance increased so greatly - it's possible.

Let's also understand the pricing of Baltimore MD vs Seattle Washington for Otakon vs Sakura-con. Do the varying economies in each respective area warrant the price differences? Are things cheaper in Seattle than in Baltimore? I don't have these facts.

In the end we can complain about it all we want, but I am sure Otakorp has its own financial/marketing team that determines an estimated cost and has to plan accordingly using their predicted amount of attendees.

#29 Orangejuice857

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:21 PM

I always preregister for otakon and have been for the last 10 years now, just so I can save money vs. at the door rate.

I do have a question in that matter too, What is the projected @ the door rates for this year?
I always have friends who want to come last minute or just want to come on saturday but don't want to pay 75-100$ for just one day.

Also, has there been any thought into doing one day passes again? or a Fri-Sat pass? I know plently of people including myself who would take advantage of that.

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#30 SilverMiko

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:27 PM

Our previous comptroller explains it pretty darn well here- http://board.otakon....ndpost&p=249690

And he is correct in that comparing cost to AX doesn't really mesh since you'd have to factor in sponsorship vs non-sponsorship.

Also, labor does cost differently in every state, heck, every city. When I worked for GES, the union rate for Philly compared to Baltimore was higher, even DC is slightly different compared to Baltimore. I also do not know the union cost in Seattle compared to Baltimore, but again union is also tied into facility also tied into AV also tied into logistics as a whole.
We've explained the why in pretty fair detail, and I think the quality of the event is worth the cost and even if I weren't staffing, I'd pay the price to attend because I think Otakon is a fantastic show and it's WHY I started staffing.

Lauren Gallo

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#31 razisgosu

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:35 PM

Our previous comptroller explains it pretty darn well here- http://board.otakon....ndpost&p=249690

And he is correct in that comparing cost to AX doesn't really mesh since you'd have to factor in sponsorship vs non-sponsorship.

Also, labor does cost differently in every state, heck, every city. When I worked for GES, the union rate for Philly compared to Baltimore was higher, even DC is slightly different compared to Baltimore. I also do not know the union cost in Seattle compared to Baltimore, but again union is also tied into facility also tied into AV also tied into logistics as a whole.
We've explained the why in pretty fair detail, and I think the quality of the event is worth the cost and even if I weren't staffing, I'd pay the price to attend because I think Otakon is a fantastic show and it's WHY I started staffing.


Sorry if I was coming across as questioning, I was actually trying to provide some insight for people who did not believe the price was just. I fully support the rate Otakon is charging and will be pre-registering this week.

#32 SilverMiko

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:37 PM

I was actually quoting you as a springboard to keep the topic thread relevant to what you brought up since someone else was posting as I was posting and to make sure people knew what tangent of the thread I was coming off of. ^^

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#33 chatterchud13

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 02:12 PM

alright I'm gonna give my 2 cents here like or not. I've been going to Otakon for the past 5 or six years. Until recently I haven't had a job and have managed to pay for what everyone seems to call an outrageous price hike. It's 5 dollars guys. the last price hike was back in 08 or 09, my second con and I think the experience itself is well worth it. I don't always get to see the voice actors I want or even the panels, concerts, ect but I still make every penny worth it. If you're going to complain about 5 measly dollars I will give you two suggestions. First manage your budget to accomidate the 5 dollar increase. my second option while it may not seem fair is simple: if you don't like having to pay 5 extra dollars then don't go. If everyone has to hear you complain about it until July it will make the con less enjoyable not just for you but the fans around you.
I'm stepping down from my soap box for now but I will be back.

#34 IAmsRyoSan

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 02:13 PM

-pulls out $5-
.-.
Otakon offers so many activities, panels, chances to meet amazing guests and so many of you are getting upset about a tiny bit more money for pre-reg. Otakorp does their best to make Otakon the best experience for all of us.
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#35 Shadow_otm

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 02:24 PM

Lemme just toss in my two cents...

I understand part of the problem is rising cost, including the BCC rising its cost for Otakon to be present there. Unfortionatly the BCC has probably done little to no maintence in the past years. The escalators are prone to breakdowns more and more it seems and the artist alley has had no men's restroom for YEARS. Really that's unacceptable given that they rise their cost but don't properly maintain their space. I know know how to install a toilet, a urinal probably isn't much different, and I've done tiling work before. With just one other person that job should take less than a week I would think, so I don't know how anyone excuses not fixing it.

But for thought... Otakon may want to consider doing something about their rising expenses. I know I'd hate to say invite one less guest or run less video, but I'm sure there is one or more other things that could be looked at. Not having the BCC serve expensive sushi or pocky in the case that such does cost Otakon would be sacrifices I'm sure people would be willing to make in exchange for a lowering of registration. Also consider the possibility of "VIP registration," something that I know a number of smaller conventions have been doing, having some people pay extra (around twice normal reg cost) to get priority in lines and some swag. That could help with overall cost and curb the need to raise the general reg cost depending on how many VIP were available and how many people went for them over normal reg.

TLDR; BCC needs to learn to fix stuff and hope you guys look at some stuff to help with cost.
I'll think of something to put here later.

#36 Joe Foering

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 04:34 PM

Lemme just toss in my two cents...

I understand part of the problem is rising cost, including the BCC rising its cost for Otakon to be present there. Unfortionatly the BCC has probably done little to no maintence in the past years. The escalators are prone to breakdowns more and more it seems and the artist alley has had no men's restroom for YEARS. Really that's unacceptable given that they rise their cost but don't properly maintain their space. I know know how to install a toilet, a urinal probably isn't much different, and I've done tiling work before. With just one other person that job should take less than a week I would think, so I don't know how anyone excuses not fixing it.


Believe me, we have people who are in constant contact with the higher-ups in the BCC throughout the weekend to keep on top of things like that -- that is, in fact one of the primary jobs of the Convention Chairman and the Operations Staff who report to him. But maintenance is one of those things we don't have 100% control over, because it's not *our* people doing the actual work.

But for thought... Otakon may want to consider doing something about their rising expenses. I know I'd hate to say invite one less guest or run less video, but I'm sure there is one or more other things that could be looked at. Not having the BCC serve expensive sushi or pocky in the case that such does cost Otakon would be sacrifices I'm sure people would be willing to make in exchange for a lowering of registration.


Sorry, but you're preaching to the choir here. :) Unfortunately, we have absolutely NO control over the food that the concession people sell or (especially) the prices that they charge. They have an exclusive contract with the BCC, they set the prices, and they pocket all the money. All we can do is suggest to them what to cell, which is why there's any pocky at all, overpriced or otherwise.

Also consider the possibility of "VIP registration," something that I know a number of smaller conventions have been doing, having some people pay extra (around twice normal reg cost) to get priority in lines and some swag. That could help with overall cost and curb the need to raise the general reg cost depending on how many VIP were available and how many people went for them over normal reg.


That has come up for discussion with our planning committee in the past. If I remember correctly, one of the reasons that it has been shot down in the past is for egalitarian reasons. We want everyone who comes to have an equal opportunity to see and do as much as possible at the con. While offering extra access at a premium price may sound cool, especially for the person who can afford the premium price, it has the effect of reducing access for everyone else. Every "Premium" member who gets a seat at the Masquerade or at the Big Musical Act means that there's one "Non-Premium" member who will miss out on something that they got their hopes up for, just because he couldn't afford to pay more money. "By fans, for fans" means that everyone has (in theory) the same opportunities to see and do what they came to Otakon for.

At least, that's always been my view on the matter. :)

Still, we appreciate the measured response and we appreciate the input.
Joe Foering -- jfoering@gmail.com
Unofficial Keeper of Institutional Memory
2011 Comptroller, Otakorp, Inc.
2003 President/Con Chair
LARP DH, 1997-2002, 2004-2010
Lots of other Ota-Jobs over the years as well...

#37 DestroyingStars

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 04:35 PM

I honestly don't know what you guys are complaining about. This is my first Otakon, and my second convention ever. The one I went to wasn't even a fraction of the size of Otakon, and prereg was $60.

And so what if I went up five dollars? You're acting like it's a one hundred dollar hike.

If I'm thirteen, and can work my butt off to pay for my registration, cosplay, and my share of the hotel price, adult's can, too.

And plus, they've got to have money for programming and to pay the staff. Last year, this convention had the biggest guest list that I've ever seen. Money doesn't grow on trees, guys. (though I really wish it did. . .~)

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  • i'm always online there, so if you need to reach me for some reason, send me an ask on there to get a quicker response

CONVENTIONS

  • Otakon 2013 (money's tight this year, gotta cut back orz)


COSPLAY

  • Kagamine Rin (I need a Len, if you know a Len like set me up with them or s/t.)
  • Ultimate Madoka (or Godoka, Kamidoka, etc. etc.)
  • Aisaka Taiga (this uniform)

I'm totally up to meeting with you / taking pictures or anything of the sort!! If we don't coordinate or anything, but you still want to keep an eye out for me or something, look below!!

 

FRIDAY: Look for an Ultimate Madoka cosplayer, about 4'11" (really short). I'll be wearing a Pikachu-plush backpack, and I'll be with a Kitana (Mortal Kombat) cosplayer! I'll also have a bow and arrow with me, if that helps~

SATURDAY: Look for a Kagamine Rin cosplayer with light-up headphones and the same backpack~ I'll be with my friend again, this time as Hatsune Miku!


#38 razisgosu

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 04:37 PM

Also consider the possibility of "VIP registration," something that I know a number of smaller conventions have been doing, having some people pay extra (around twice normal reg cost) to get priority in lines and some swag. That could help with overall cost and curb the need to raise the general reg cost depending on how many VIP were available and how many people went for them over normal reg.


Personally, I would NOT advise this. I am speaking from a gamer perspective here, however a "VIP" registration to a convention such as Otakon would NOT be a choice for a majority of people, it would be a requirement. Take the FMA movie showing from 2011, "oh you're VIP? Front of the line 5 minutes before the show starts." Quite frankly it would be unfair to those who wait in line for the showing and line up early, not to mention it would be unfair to those who get sent away who were near the end of the line, but still lined up 30 minutes early only to find the room was full.

Edited by razisgosu, 21 February 2012 - 04:40 PM.


#39 SilverMiko

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 04:47 PM

And plus, they've got to have money for programming and to pay the staff. Last year, this convention had the biggest guest list that I've ever seen. Money doesn't grow on trees, guys. (though I really wish it did. . .~)


Um just to clarify, Otakon staff IS NOT paid. Ever. At all. We do this for free as volunteers.

Lauren Gallo

Otakon 2014 Virtual Info Desk Head
Otakon 2012-2013 Operations Division Head

Otakon 2011 Con Ops Dept Head
Otakorp 2011 Board of Directors- Recording Secretary
Otakon 2010 Con Ops Dept Head
Otakon 2006-2009 Exhibitions Staff
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#40 DestroyingStars

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 04:58 PM


And plus, they've got to have money for programming and to pay the staff. Last year, this convention had the biggest guest list that I've ever seen. Money doesn't grow on trees, guys. (though I really wish it did. . .~)


Um just to clarify, Otakon staff IS NOT paid. Ever. At all. We do this for free as volunteers.


Oh, really? Sorry, I knew that the volunteers weren't paid, but I thought the gofers and programmers were given somewhat of a compensation for their time. :L

rinkagarnine @ tumblr

  • i'm always online there, so if you need to reach me for some reason, send me an ask on there to get a quicker response

CONVENTIONS

  • Otakon 2013 (money's tight this year, gotta cut back orz)


COSPLAY

  • Kagamine Rin (I need a Len, if you know a Len like set me up with them or s/t.)
  • Ultimate Madoka (or Godoka, Kamidoka, etc. etc.)
  • Aisaka Taiga (this uniform)

I'm totally up to meeting with you / taking pictures or anything of the sort!! If we don't coordinate or anything, but you still want to keep an eye out for me or something, look below!!

 

FRIDAY: Look for an Ultimate Madoka cosplayer, about 4'11" (really short). I'll be wearing a Pikachu-plush backpack, and I'll be with a Kitana (Mortal Kombat) cosplayer! I'll also have a bow and arrow with me, if that helps~

SATURDAY: Look for a Kagamine Rin cosplayer with light-up headphones and the same backpack~ I'll be with my friend again, this time as Hatsune Miku!


#41 SilverMiko

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 05:00 PM

There are different tiers of things ranging from a free teeshirt to some parts of hotel night comped for gofers, but not actual payment. Panelists/Programming is a topic Bruce or Jim can address.
We do not receive monetary compensation.

Lauren Gallo

Otakon 2014 Virtual Info Desk Head
Otakon 2012-2013 Operations Division Head

Otakon 2011 Con Ops Dept Head
Otakorp 2011 Board of Directors- Recording Secretary
Otakon 2010 Con Ops Dept Head
Otakon 2006-2009 Exhibitions Staff
Otakon BBS moderator


#42 babroseker

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 05:23 PM

There are different tiers of things ranging from a free teeshirt to some parts of hotel night comped for gofers, but not actual payment. Panelists/Programming is a topic Bruce or Jim can address.
We do not receive monetary compensation.

Panelists get comped memberships (a maximum of 3 panelists per panel) and last year we instituted the Panelist Lounge with some light refreshments and a place to prep for your panels.

Edited by babroseker, 21 February 2012 - 05:29 PM.
clarification of wording

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#43 toujourspret

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 05:25 PM

We do this because we're crazy because we love you. There are perks to working the con, but they're more to the tune of meeting the coolest friends you'll ever meet and the satisfaction of a con well done. Lord knows we couldn't afford to run at all if we paid anyone, haha.

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#44 DeathJester

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 10:00 PM

I'm sure all the concerns from this 2010 thread are coming back. Otakon is one hell of a convention. but I just hope we're not looking at another $20 in membership increases over the next 5 years again.
http://board.otakon....showtopic=18551

#45 Joe Foering

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 11:08 PM



And plus, they've got to have money for programming and to pay the staff. Last year, this convention had the biggest guest list that I've ever seen. Money doesn't grow on trees, guys. (though I really wish it did. . .~)


Um just to clarify, Otakon staff IS NOT paid. Ever. At all. We do this for free as volunteers.


Oh, really? Sorry, I knew that the volunteers weren't paid, but I thought the gofers and programmers were given somewhat of a compensation for their time. :L


Coinidentally enough, last year I worked in Gofer Operations (and will again this year), so I know exactly what the Gofers receive for services rendered. The more hours worked, the more one gets in return. Every four hours worked got you a meal voucher that you could spend at the food vendors inside the BCC. Higher numbers of hours got you things like T-shirts. At either 12 or sixteen hours (I misremember which), you got your membershi[ fee reimbursed. And at twenty hours or more, you got a partial reimbursement of your hotel costs (provided you had any, of course). It's not exactly like "paying" our volunteers, but it is a way to help them recoup some of their expenses as a way of saying thanks for their service.
Joe Foering -- jfoering@gmail.com
Unofficial Keeper of Institutional Memory
2011 Comptroller, Otakorp, Inc.
2003 President/Con Chair
LARP DH, 1997-2002, 2004-2010
Lots of other Ota-Jobs over the years as well...

#46 DarkHayama

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 03:56 AM


Also consider the possibility of "VIP registration," something that I know a number of smaller conventions have been doing, having some people pay extra (around twice normal reg cost) to get priority in lines and some swag. That could help with overall cost and curb the need to raise the general reg cost depending on how many VIP were available and how many people went for them over normal reg.


Personally, I would NOT advise this. I am speaking from a gamer perspective here, however a "VIP" registration to a convention such as Otakon would NOT be a choice for a majority of people, it would be a requirement. Take the FMA movie showing from 2011, "oh you're VIP? Front of the line 5 minutes before the show starts." Quite frankly it would be unfair to those who wait in line for the showing and line up early, not to mention it would be unfair to those who get sent away who were near the end of the line, but still lined up 30 minutes early only to find the room was full.


This. Some sort of VIP registration might work at a smaller con (though I've never been a fan), but in a convention this big, it would have one of two effects. Either it would be so expensive, nobody would bother, making it essentially useless, or so many people would bother that in order to do anything you'd HAVE to do it, thus putting most with "priority" at equal footing again, and horribly excluding the few that aren't.

I also wanted to point out that while AX's cost may be a little cheaper than Otakon's, last I looked you had to pay for the concerts at AX separately. So you can definitely argue that you get more for your money from Otakon.

Yes, it's unfortunate that the price had to go up. But, that's the way of the world. Everything inflates, prices constantly rise, and to expect Otakon to be able to maintain the same price constantly when nothing else is, that's just unrealistic.
Otakon 2012, here I come!

#47 Oldtype

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 07:38 AM

I told my wife about this as a matter of fact and we both came away with the same response. If a 5 dollar hike ensures the same level of quality and/or builds upon the past few years experience then as Phillip J. Fry would say, "Take my money!"

Obviously no one wants to pay more for anything but hey, I would love $1.50 gas again like my college days. The registration for a three day event is still under $25 a day; that's value. Besides, it's not the registration that hurts the wallet compared to the bills you drop in hotels, the parking fee, cost of transportation, and food. You get what you pay for.To be honest, if I knew for sure that any additional increases to registration would make things even better then I would be willing to go much higher. It's almost a thankless (and definitely unseen) job working behind the scenes to pull this off every year - keep up the good job, staffers.

#48 ChibiMoon

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 10:06 AM

I think a $5 price raise is perfectly fair for all the awesome things Otakon has to offer, and have already pre-regged and am super excited. I just went to Katsucon this past weekend, and it's completely lame (no offense to those who may have gone and enjoyed themselves) compared to Otakon and it's been going only one year less than Otakon has. They have a cheaper pre-reg rate, but they also have a very lame Con. The panels they had were boring and pretty much put me to sleep, and their AMV contest was horrible. I'd rather go to Otakon and pay a little more and get more in return then pay less and get crap.
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#49 Adv1sor

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 11:39 AM

Otakon is awesome and is well worth a five dollar increase.

The BCC is not. It is poorly staffed, (rude, inefficient, and often just plain stupid), poorly maintained, (escalator problems every year, rest rooms closed every year, trash problems every year), and of course the constant reoccurring complaint about the overpriced food served up by people that would never be hired by McDonald's. Yeah, I know, exclusive contract.

I also know that money talks.

I find it hard to believe that, with the revenue Otakon brings to the Inner Harbor and the BCC, we can't get better performance and some changes from the BCC itself.

Why do we keep putting up with the same shortcomings every year? Is the BCC really the only place that Otakon can be held?

#50 SilverMiko

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 02:34 PM

Otakon is awesome and is well worth a five dollar increase.

The BCC is not. It is poorly staffed, (rude, inefficient, and often just plain stupid), poorly maintained, (escalator problems every year, rest rooms closed every year, trash problems every year), and of course the constant reoccurring complaint about the overpriced food served up by people that would never be hired by McDonald's. Yeah, I know, exclusive contract.

I also know that money talks.

I find it hard to believe that, with the revenue Otakon brings to the Inner Harbor and the BCC, we can't get better performance and some changes from the BCC itself.

Why do we keep putting up with the same shortcomings every year? Is the BCC really the only place that Otakon can be held?


Hi, as head of Operations this year and head of Con Ops last year, I just want to clarify some things about this.

We were in constant touch with the BCC about certain maintenance issues such as the restrooms and the trash and the elevators. With the high volume of people compared to the BCC staff designated for this janitorial tasks, at points the BCC was two-hours backlogged with the multiple requests that came in, but they were working on it, which didn't always show. Our facilities liaison from the BCC also does his best to help and has always been extremely gracious to work with when he has to speak with me over 9000 times a day at con.
These are things that we will keep in mind to look at, because personally I do really like the BCC as a venue for our event, but that's me speaking as me, not for Ota.

Lauren Gallo

Otakon 2014 Virtual Info Desk Head
Otakon 2012-2013 Operations Division Head

Otakon 2011 Con Ops Dept Head
Otakorp 2011 Board of Directors- Recording Secretary
Otakon 2010 Con Ops Dept Head
Otakon 2006-2009 Exhibitions Staff
Otakon BBS moderator